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Carcinogenic Windmills & Dads Who Love Marx

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“Now, you could see the Trump administra­tion’s willingness to trust the meat industry to keep our meat safe as part of an overall attack on government regulation, a willingness to trust profit-making businesses to do the right thing and let the market rule. And there’s something to that, but it’s not the whole story, as illustrated by another event: Trump’s declaration the other day that wind turbines cause cancer.

“Now, you could put this down to personal derangement: Trump has had an irrational hatred for wind power since he failed to prevent construction of a wind farm near his Scottish golf course. And Trump seems deranged and irrational on so many issues that one more bizarre claim hardly seems to matter.”

Does anyone else find it even minimally terrifying that the Nobel Prize-winning New York Times columnist Paul Krugman just called the president of the United States a madman? True, Krugman modifies his assertion with an ever-slippery “seems.“ But he is not making a distinction between appearance and reality, as in something seems to be one thing but is in fact something else. No, there is no existential question here. On April 4, 2019, Paul Krugman openly declared in the op-ed pages of the New York Times that the leader of the free world ain’t right in the head, is cuckoo, es muy loco, is crazier than a nun doing a lewd striptease at Sunday Mass.

I think we’ve reached a milestone here, folks. Yes, it’s easy for most of us to say casually that he’s nuts, particularly because it’s true. But it’s not every day that a widely respected economist and Times columnist just comes right out and says it.

Rump has struck me as being especially crazy lately, the wind/ cancer correlation reaching an apparent new low of sorts (or maybe it’s a new height). But — and I’m certainly not defending him on this — having seen him deliver the line on video, I’m not convinced that he was making a statement of fact. An absurdly insecure man, Rump tends to signal his sarcasm with a smirk, just to make sure his audience knows he’s not totally bonkers. What he was so ineptly trying to say seems to me to have been a parody of so-called liberal worries about the deleterious effects of everything from cigarettes to asbestos to climate change.

And I do realize that Rump smirks at almost everything. It’s one of his least attractive characteristics, along with the fat ass, the muskrat he wears on his head, and the spectacularly unconvincing Cheetos-colored spray-on tan. If he weren’t such an asshole, he’d be a perfect candidate for “Queer Eye.”

Then again, what’s the big deal? Paul Krugman called the president nutso. So what? Rump is so obviously batshit crazy that it just doesn’t matter anymore who points it out.

“Pete Buttigieg’s father was a Marxist professor who lauded the Communist Manifesto!” was the screaming headline in a recent issue of the Washington Examiner. (Okay, I added the exclamation point for comedy’s sake. Forgive me; I couldn’t help myself.) In these fast-moving times, it’s somehow refreshing to know that classical red-baiting is still alive and well. The Examiner was breathless in its coverage of this important story. The writers of the piece, Emily Larsen and Joseph Simonson, provide a handy lesson in the art of the smear. Buttigieg has sterling credentials; he’s a veteran of the war in Afghanistan and an Oxford University graduate. So what are two right-wing journalists to do? Go after his father, of course. Toward this end, they recruit Paul Kengor, “a professor at Grove City College and an expert in communism and [note how they slide into] progressivism, [who] said Buttigieg was among a group of leftist professors who focused on injecting Marxism into the wider culture.

“‘They’re part of a wider international community of Marxist theorists and academicians with a particular devotion to the writings of the late Italian Marxist theorist Antonio Gramsci, who died over 80 years ago. Gramsci was all about applying Marxist theory to culture and cultural institutions — what is often referred to as a “long march through the institutio­ns,” such as film, media, and especially education,’ Kengor told the Washington Examiner.”

The article goes on to note that “Lis Smith, communications adviser for Buttigieg’s presidential exploratory committee, declined to comment on how his father influenced his political beliefs or on Pete Buttigieg’s thoughts on Marxist thinkers such as Gramsci.” Smart move, Lis! Anything you say can and will be used against your candidate in the court of right-wing opinion.

JaniceWatch! We here at Media Circus are always in the mood for distractions from the god-awful state of our country. In this spirit we present the first in an irregular series of featurettes devoted to the wardrobe of NBC4 meteorologist Janice Huff. No, we’re not the first to admire Janice’s taste in clothing. There is even a website devoted to it. Honest! But the website is moribund; there hasn’t been a new post in a long time, so Media Circus is stepping up.

Janice’s taste in clothes is simple but fashionable; she tends to favor bold colors and no patterns. But every once in a while she goes for a wilder look, such as the time she went on the air wearing a black leather affair that was more appropriate for a dominatrix than for a weatherwoman. Generally though, she favors tasteful, flattering dresses that are tight at the waist and uniform in color, particularly bright orange and red. We promise to keep you posted on the ongoing state of Janice’s outfits. They — like the out lesbian comedian Kate McKinnon’s jaw-dropping impersonation of Rudy Giuliani — are among the few bright spots in our otherwise grim, embarrassing national state of affairs.

Follow @EdSikov on Twitter and Facebook.

Updated 12:44 pm, April 11, 2019
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